NaNoWriMo 2017: Meet The Writers

by Gurpreet Sihat

Last week you heard from Megan Evans, a young screenwriter jumping into her very first NaNoWriMo! This week, we’re heading towards a writer that’s taken part in SEVEN events. Meet Ramon!


Author Name: Ramon Ballard


Twitter Handle: @raballard

Q: How many years have you participated in NaNoWriMo?

A: At my age, I don’t remember the first year that I participated in Nano, it was around the first ever Nano, I think, but don’t shoot me if I’m wrong. (2010 I think)

Q: How many times have you won NanoWriMo?

A: I never entered the contest to win. However I have won all 4 years that I’ve entered. It’s really simple. Just sit at you computer and type until your fingers fall off, that’s your signal to stop for the day. Rest, and then begin the same routine on the next day.

Q: Are you a panster or a plotter?

A: I’m a total panster. There is nothing more satisfying than sitting in front of a blank screen and watching your characters fill up the sheet. Some of the characters don’t realize they’re about to get erased.

Q: Have you ever quit NaNoWriMo halfway through before? If yes, why?

A: Once I start, I complete.

Q: What software do you use to write your NaNoWriMo novels?

A: I’m kinda techlite, all I use is grammercy and word. I ain’t smart enough to use scrivener and the like.

Q: Have you got any pre-writing rituals?

A: I need to start at the same time. (see my routine)

Q: What’s your writing routine?

A: My writing routine is totally whacked. I write when I feel like it, or whenever I can free myself from my Twitter addiction. I need to start at the same hour every day (1 pm) if I miss that hour I’ll wait until the following day. If I’m starting a new chapter or WIP, I prefer to start it on a Monday or the first of the month.

Q: Do you stick to the recommended 1,666 words per day or do you set your own goals?

A: nah, I never stick to a 1666 words per day routine, I type until I get tired and then quit. One day I might do 666 words and the next day do 3266 it all equals out.

Q: How do you catch up in you fall behind?

A: You can’t worry about getting behind, as long as your writing something every day, you’re winning.

Q: How do you beat writer’s block?

A: Post on Twitter or Facebook, I usually find my way home after a few days of writers block.

Q: How different is your NaNoWriMo draft compared to a regular first draft?

A: You can’t compare Nano draft with regular draft, they are two different species.

Q: Why should writers participate in NaNoWriMo?

A: It’s like living your religion, if you live it you can’t help but become a better person, If you participate in Nano, you can’t help but becoming a better writer.

Q: What are your top three NaNoWriMo tips for newbies?

A: Writing is not a job. It’s not a hobby. It’s a drive, a journey. It’s something within us that needs to be released. If you are in it for any other reason, stop. Nano can develop first time writers, but only if you are willing to let it take you for that journey. It will complete you and defeat you in the same step. And finally, don’t sweat the small stuff. Just enjoy the ride.

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